The International Conference on Cultural Diplomacy & the UN

"Cultural Diplomacy & Soft Power in an Interdependent World: The Opportunities for Global Governance"

(New York City & Washington D.C.; February 21st - 24th, 2012)

Conference Agenda

The goal of the United Nations and Cultural Diplomacy Conference is to induce new momentum in the debate about the role of international institutions such as the United Nations, the working of global governance as a whole and effectiveness of Cultural Diplomacy. In discussing these issues The Institute for Cultural Diplomacy hopes to facilitate new tools to promote international relationships and cooperation in a globalized world.

The Congress seeks to achieve a deeper understanding of Cultural Diplomacy policies in this new modern age and will achieve these goals by exploring the routes and avenues by which a balance can be sought between ‘hard’ and ‘soft power’ represented by institutions such as the United Nations. 

The following issues will be mentioned and explored:

The Role of Cultural Diplomacy in International Institutions

In our globalized, interdependent world cultural sensitivity is necessary requirement of success. In the shifting political and economic landscape new regions come into focus and international institutions have to find the way to successfully cooperate with institutions from these regions. During the conference we aim to discover how cultural diplomacy can facilitate this process as well as how international institutions can apply cultural diplomacy in their practices to increase their effectiveness.
  • Facing the Challenges of the Shifting Political and Economic Landscape through Cultural Diplomacy
    (Focus: changes in pre-existing institutional practices, new partnerships)
  • Nongovernmental Actors’ Political influential Power
    (Focus: representing national culture, cultural diplomacy in political use)
  • Cultural Diplomacy made by International Institutions: Top Down Approach?
    (Focus: Bottom up and top down approaches, achievements in both arenas, public awareness)
  • Cultural Resources and Values in the Corporate World
    (Focus: negotiation practices, intercultural understanding, inter- cultural internal milieu)
  • Can Cultural Diplomacy be involved in every sector of an institutional framework?
    (Focus: Cultural Diplomacy; Institutional Organisation)
  • The United Nations and Cultural Diplomacy relations: Who should be included?
    (Focus: Cultural Diplomacy; United Nations; International Networking UN expansion)

The Opportunity to Engage in International Dialogue within Global Governance

In an increasingly interdependent word, political, economic and social rules need to be global in order to be effective. In order to achieve them, dialogue between and among states, as well as non-state actors is a prerequisite, despite historical and socio-cultural differences. The Conference will explore the prospective of Cultural Diplomacy as a promising tool to mediate these differences and foster mutual understanding, thus leading to more effective and consensual problem-solving arrangements.
  • Intercultural Dialogue: A practical Tool or Floating Concept?
    (Focus: definition, benefits and challenges of intercultural diplomacy, cooperation, socio-cultural identities)
  • The Challenges of Global Governance
    (Focus: interdependence, cooperation, national vs global interest)
  • Dialogue and difference in a Multi-Polar Globalized World
    (Focus: interdependence, cultural clash, cultural diplomacy, role of China/USA/EU)
  • The Role of Culture in shaping Global Governance
    (Focus: universal human rights, socio-cultural identities, Western hegemony, intercultural dialogue)
  • The use of Intercultural Dialogue by the UN
    (Focus: cooperation strategies, compliance, intercultural dialogue)

‘Soft Power’ as a Tool for International Peace and International Cooperation

Since the formation of the League of Nations ‘Soft Power’ and international cooperation has become an important element within international relations and the workings of the international system. The creation of the United Nations and other international organizations has cemented cultural diplomacy and other ‘soft power’ tools within the international dialogue and as such it is important to evaluate and discuss these in regards to international issues such as peace and cooperation. This will allow participants and speakers to analyze their effectiveness and contribute to the dialogue in order to improve relations.
  • What is Peace and how can it be achieved through International Effort?
    (Focus: definitions; value of peace, innovations, Religion and it’s affect).
  • War and its Prevention
    (Focus: cultural diplomacy and its role; recent wars and how cultural diplomacy had helped alleviate problems).
  • Recent Political unrest and ‘Soft Power’
    (Focus: Libya; Egypt; Role of cultural diplomacy).
  • What is the UN doing? The UN Policy between Hard and Soft Power.
    (Focus: Past projects; effectiveness; future, balancing hard and soft power)
  • Peace and International Cooperation in the next 20 years.
    (Focus: Rise of a multi-polar system; new institutions; Future steps).

Forging New Relationships and Understanding within the Institutional Framework

In an increasingly multi-cultural and globally governed world it is becoming necessary to establish where the policies of Political and International Institutes are heading. In order to gain an understanding of how we can work together efficiently, this conference will explore the future role of Cultural Diplomacy among institutional frameworks and in the essence of Global Governance. This will allow the participants and speakers to discuss the various ways the United Nations and other International Institutions such as NGO’s can step forward using Cultural Diplomacy as its tool.
  • Discovering the truth from the myths of institutional framework.
    (Focus: Institutional Frameworks; Inter-relations; Institutional Policies)
  • Exploring new Ways of International Culture Communication
    (Focus: Culture Diplomacy; Technological advancements; Linguistics)
  • The Future Relationship between The United Nations and NGO’s
    (Focus: The United Nations; NGO’s; Future Goals)
  • Where is the future for Cultural Diplomacy in International Institutes going?
    (Focus: Cultural Diplomacy; International Institutes; Future Initiatives)